County news February 27, 2008

Hampshire downplay Mascarenhas IPL speculation

Cricinfo staff

Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove has looked to downplay growing speculation that Dimitri Mascarenhas will become the first high-profile English recruit to the Indian Premier League.

Although the IPL's auction merry-go-round took place last week, some sides have yet to fill their quotas of eight overseas players, and the hard-hitting Mascarenhas would be a perfect signing.

"I know Dimi's sought after and I know the IPL are rewriting the rules for cricket but Dimi's contracted to us," Bransgrove told the Southern Daily Echo. "It might be easier for county players to play in the IPL from next year, when I understand it may be scheduled a little earlier so it finishes before the county season begins."